Let's Go Away For A While
"We're basically spending the entire weekend eating." Back in 2015, I took a trip out to Los Alamos, a sleepy little town about 2 hours north of Los Angeles, tucked away in a area fertile with wine makers. At the time, there were really only two spots to visit. Bob's Well Bread, which had opened the year before, which is a La Brea Bakery style restaurant with delectable breakfast and lunch options. The other was the Alamo Motel, a project from the brilliant folks at Shelter Social Club, who were in the process of transforming an old motor lodge into something more chic and modern. Cut to seven years laters, Los Alamos is now the perfect place to spend a weekend, and here are the spots you shouldn’t miss.
A Michelin starred restaurant, Bell’s (seen at top) serves the most beautifully refined French food, which is paired with exquisite service, and a lovely ambience to match. This spot is literally the best reason to visit. The dinner menu is prix fixe, think Santa Barbara Sea Urchin with a caviar topping (above), Olive Oil Poached King Salmon, Steak au Poivre, and Gâteau Breton. If you’re nearby for lunch, you can’t miss trying the Braised Beef Cheek Sandwich.
Bar Le Côté →
A 15 minute drive from Los Alamos is Bar Le Côté, Bell’s sister restaurant, giving us a spin on Spanish-inspired seafood. The menu is stocked with raw bar favorites like oysters, shrimp, and crab. Their Jamon Iberico, Boquerones, and Jambas al Ajillo were incredible, and the wine list simply divine. If you’re an interior design fan, the Scheele’s Green wall color (as I discussed in the last edition) makes the whole place sing.
Like a modern day general store, this cute, one room shop is a smattering of kitchen ware and home goods, perfect for upgrading those day-to-day items. We snagged a set of handblown Moroccan glasses which are perfect for wine.
A charming new store in town, this is a great place to grab some natural wine or beers to take back home with you.
✖️ — What was once the headquarters of Nintendo (we’re talking between 1933 and 1959) is soon to become the Marufukuro, an 18 room hotel located in the heart of Kyoto. The design is being led by Tadao Ando’s studio, who was tasked with reimagining the building's interiors though it will retain many of its original details, including decorative tiling and art-deco lighting fixtures. This place is shaping up too look incredible. The official opening is April 2022.
✖️ — Uni is a new body care brand that I can get behind. Designed by Marc Atlan, the system comes in two parts. First, there’s a reusable dispenser that’s made from aluminum and a recyclable bio resin (an eco-friendly plastic made from biological sources instead of instead of petroleum products). Second, there’s a 100% recycled aluminum refillable bottle, which twists into the dispenser to allow you to pump and dispense the product. Always a fan of the projects Marc is involved with, and I love his outlook on this project, saying, “I wanted it to be discreet, something that could blend in all decors and environments so that it could be a permanent fixture for your shower, your vanity, your counter…not something disposable.”
✖️ — I don’t listen to podcasts ( ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ) though I’m a big fan of graphic designer Cory Schmitz, and his recent interview on YOU ME AND THE INDUSTRY was a great listen. Cory speaks about his approach to branding, logo designs, film cameras, risograph printing, and a lot more. Highly recommended.
✖️ — Some people collect dolls, some shoes, my partner I collect scents. The simple of act of spritzing yourself in the morning feels transformative, you’re walking out in the world as someone different every day, plus, it’s great when people compliment you on how you smell… To this end, Dries Van Noten has a new line of ten different scents available, and I’m in love with them.
There’s a beauty and thoughtfulness to the design of the packaging. The bottom part of the bottles are made of recycled plastics while the top is colored glass. Plus, each bottle also comes with a key to unlock the cap and funnel, which makes them easy to refill. With so many options, Dries himself says his favorite is the Cannabis & Patchouli, so maybe that’s a good place to start?
✖️ — Monotype has compiled their Type Trends of 2022, an interesting look at what’s going on the world of typography. It’s a well-curated list of ideas and projects, definitely some things I’d seen and some that I hadn’t. Major props for creating a category called “Throw-Up.”
✖️ — I’ve been following Paolo Puck on Twitter for a little bit and his work blows my mind. Paolo is a British artist who makes these incredible tufted sculptures that look like the nightmares from children’s stories. I mean that in the best way possible. As he puts it, his work “invites the viewer to contemplate topics ranging from hidden and contrasting identities, authoritarianism, greed, power, helplessness, and our temporary and fragile nature. As always, Puck explores these topics with humor and a hard-won sense of optimism.”
✖️ — Looking in people’s homes is one of my favorite things to do. Everyone does it, we’re fascinated by the unknown, and seeing how other people live scratches that itch of curiosity. My preferred method of peeping is The Modern House’s Journal section. One of their newest stories features Jo Sindle and Kyle Stewart, the creative duo behind Goodhood, what I’d consider to be simply one of the best lifestyle shops.
Getting a glimpse into their home then is quite a treat for me. As I’d imagine, their space is extremely well-thought out, work in progress over a span of 17 years and counting. It’s a space with a very honest palette of materials and colors: concrete and woods, blacks and creams. It may sound “minimal,” a word I’ve learned to dislike, I would instead describe the space as a well-curated, with lots of charing vignettes comprised of lots of thoughtful objects.
The Trend Report™ by my partner, Kyle Raymond Fitzpatrick, is a sharp and insightful look at everything going on in the world, arriving every Sunday to your inbox. Highly recommended, obviously.